Follow TV Tropes

This is based on opinion. Please don't list it on a work's trope example list.


Fashion-Victim Villain

Go To
Okay, he's relaxing at home, but... really, Victor?

"You can bet that anybody seriously interested in world domination is going to end up looking like a real snickerdoodle."

The heroes have had it. They've been captured and tied up, and can only watch mutely and impotently as the Evil Overlord's final plans unfold. The large, oversized doors at the far end of his cavernous control room swing open, and in walks the Big Bad himself in an ominous swirl of purple fog...

Wait, is that a cocktail dress he's wearing? Is that a bone in his nose? Hoop earrings in his ears? A pink satin turban? Clown makeup? A wig that makes him look like a glam rocker with a bad hair day? A lip ring?

Did the Evil Overlord suddenly forget that he was in a serious action-adventure and decide to play dress-up with a trunkful of his mother's old castoffs?

Uh-oh. It seems we have a Fashion-Victim Villain on our hands.

This trope comes into play whenever a villain decides to don an outrageous, over-the-top costume, usually replete with Dark Colors, Shoulders of Doom, and Spikes of Villainy, thinking it will make him look like a fearless, all-powerful badass. Instead, it makes him look pitiable and ridiculous, if not slightly unhinged.

It's not hard to see why this should happen. Villainy, as a profession, tends to attract flamboyant personality types. Still, this is no excuse for dressing up as a gothic drag queen during the least appropriate times, and it's hard (though not impossible) for any amount of inhuman strength, dog-kicking, or Magnificent Bastardness to restore a villain's menace once it's been undercut by a move like this. (Unless the villain happens to be a Monster Clown or something similar, and the over-the-top costume and makeup is part of their schtick.)

The Fashion-Victim Villain most often dresses in this manner during moments of triumph or when they're first meeting with the heroes (in a failed attempt to impress them). Sometimes they may dress like this unintentionally — a radiation suit, designed for the very utilitarian purpose of protecting the villain, may have ridiculously large hips or a phallic helmet, or be colored with loud shades. Either way, one can expect the audience watching the show to chortle a bit upon seeing the villain's new threads. The heroes themselves may mock the villain for his lack of taste, but just as often will let it pass without comment (especially if they have other, more pressing matters on their minds). The villain's allies and henchmen probably won't dare to even crack a smile around the villain (when he is around).

Of course, it was also stated in the Evil Overlord List #29, which stated "I will dress in bright and cheery colors, and so throw my enemies into confusion." Still, that's no excuse for not doing it well.

Compare Highly-Conspicuous Uniform if the Mooks are fashion victims, too. Compare Scary Impractical Armor, which is more for show than protection. Compare Embarrassing but Empowering Outfit if the tacky duds are the source of the villain's powers. Also see Fashionable Evil.

A subset of Narm. Compare What The Hell, Costuming Department? Contrast Man of Wealth and Taste.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • In the first Appleseed movie the officers of the Olympos Regular Army wear completely ridiculous teal uniforms.
  • Black Butler: the demon Sebastian's too-terrifying-to-comprehend true form has stiletto heels.
  • Creed from Black Cat has a rather over-the-top villain outfit. It looks more like an overdone, flamboyant JRock drag, being open-chested and having large black feathers lining it.
  • Bleach:
    • Harribel. Her outfit wouldn't be so bad if she actually kept it on. Alas, her Espada tattoo is located on her enormous boobs so she needs to go topless to show it off (her modesty is slightly preserved by her mask remains). It only goes downhill from there.
    • Oh, you think Harribel is bad? Remember Nnoitora? Remember that spoon thing behind his head? Remember the parachute pants? Remember the shoes?
    • Bad as Harribel's ultimate form is, there is nothing that the creator could come up with to top Charlotte's ultimate form. It makes his opponent Yumichika laugh so hard that Ikkaku, who was on the other side of the town and about to engage in his own battle, can hear him. He's supposed to be an over-the-top parody of Magical Girl anime.
    • Zommari's Resurrección gives him a white skinsuit covered in eyes and replaces his legs with a huge, pink pumpkin-like ball covered in faces, and it expands his Facial Markings in a way that just makes him look like he's wearing runny makeup.
    • What about Aizen's banana suit? The form-fitting dress, high heels, and butterfly wings aren't much of an improvement. To say nothing of that tacky mullet.
    • Ginjo's new outfit. Was he taking fashion tips from Aizen?
    • The Vandereich mostly avert this trope due to them Putting on the Reich, but Quilge Opie wears the FVV medal with pride, with round sunglasses, a weird hat, horr How spoon shoes, and a VERY ugly bowl haircut on one side of his head. It's bad enough that Ichigo makes fun of it.
      • To say nothing of Bazz-B's pink mohawk or the freaking Masked Luchador in the group.
    • We also have Nanana Najahkoop, who in addition to having arguably the weirdest name in a series known for having some strange names, also wears a Sternritter jacket that only covers his chest, leaving his stomach exposed, Nnoitra-style parachute pants, a five-pointed haircut that looks like it has black licorice sticks protruding from it, bug-like goggles of some sort, and checkerboard teeth. Then we have Lille Barro, with one of the weirdest haircuts in Bleach (to the point that people still wonder if it's actually his hair or a hat, though the colored manga seems to indicate the latter) and a sniper's rifle covered in white fur as his weapon of choice. There's also Shaz Domino and his leopard-print pimp outfit.
  • Papillion from Buso Renkin is most definitely a deliberate example. After his transformation into a homunculus, he then dons an outfit more appropriate for an ice dancer than a villain, but which he considers to be fabulous. Most characters are weirded out by his bizarre fashion sense (except for his family and Cloudcuckoolanders like Kazuki and Captain Bravo.) Anything else he wears post-transformation will be equally strange and unsettling.
  • In City Hunter, there's an In-Universe example with one of the Villains of the Week: after he managed to capture both Ryo Saeba and the girl he was protecting, a fashion designer, said girl accuses him of poor fashion taste upon seeing his clothes; this flusters him, as when they meet later after Ryo and the girl made their escape, he has put up tackier clothes and inevitably gets further mocked by the protagonists, to his embarrassment.
  • Code Geass R2
    • After seeing Lelouch's and Suzaku's new outfits after episode 21, the fanbase spent weeks snickering childishly. The actual outfits really aren't that bad, being designed by CLAMP... but... well, they... are... designed by CLAMP. Lelouch's outfit is the better one of the two, but the hat just pushes it past the "Pope/Not Pope" outfit threshold. Suzaku looks OK while wearing the cape, but then he takes it off and you see he has skin-tight shoulders. The fact that their arms and legs are so long (as expected of most character designs from CLAMP) doesn't help.
    • A CLAMP artbook shows that the hat could have been worse. the original version looked like nothing so much as a kite; the hat he does wear in the show is merely the base of the original.
    • CLAMP also designed an outfit for C.C. to go along with Lelouch's and Suzaku's. It actually looks pretty good, but unfortunately doesn't show up in the series (she does finally wear it in one of the last Picture Drama features).
    • For some, the overly fancy-looking ornamental sword Lelouch carried was usually taken more seriously after he got fatally skewered by it in the last episode while others have said that the sword actually ruined the aforementioned scene for them.
    • Several Britannia nobles have hairstyles out of date by at least a hundred years, including the Emperor. The British just really love wigs.
  • Smug Snake Shapiro Keats from Dancougar likes his purple eyeliner and has the fashion sense of David Bowie.
  • Daltanious:
    • Kloppen, Emperor Dolmen's Dragon, wears a large headpiece with spikes that fan beside his head and a bamboo-stick like crown. His suit is orange with yellow stripes, accompanied with thick yellow gloves and a clunky belt with a red gemstone in the center. His armour is supposed to imitate that of a lion, but it makes him look like a rejected He-Man and the Masters of the Universe villain. See here.
    • And he somehow manages to look even more ridiculous when he takes his armour off.
    • Great Emperor Dolmen, despite his blue skin and purple sclerae, has poofy, curled-up ashen blonde hair reminiscent of a French aristocrat's wig and a tacky crown.
  • Mello from Death Note wearing black leather all over, but with navel baring and huge fur collar is supposed to be seen as intimidating, but mostly looks laughably like he raided Squall Leonheart's closet.
  • DNA˛ has two examples: at one point Ryuuji hires a trio of thugs that have apparently popped out directly from Fist of the North Star (see above), and after obtaining superpowers Ryuuji starts wearing an outfit that is beyond description beyond Karin's befuddled "Wh-What's with that outfit?" when she first saw it. The latter example has a partial justification, as the gloves act as a necessary Power Limiter, but the rest is not.
  • Agon of Eyeshield 21 seems to incorporate everything that screams "douche" (rather appropriate given that he's a Jerk Jock) into his look which frankly makes his popularity with the ladies rather perplexing. This is a 17-year-old Japanese boy who wears dreadlocks, sunglasses, and a gold chain around his neck at all times. To say nothing of the huge dragon tattoo on his back and his horrendous clothing choices (wearing an animal print dress shirt to a date is just all kinds of wrong...)
  • Fairy Tail:
    • Jose Porla's first outfit with batwings and a long drooping pointed hat can cause a few giggles. His second outfit with its military theme looks much better.
    • Irene Belerion's outfit with Underboobs and a rather bizzare hat thing.
  • Fist of the North Star. This is a show where your garden-variety mook runs around in makeup, a mohawk, and clothing that wouldn't look out of place on Conan the Barbarian if it weren't pink.
  • Envy of Fullmetal Alchemist, who's running around in a skirt and a tanktop that only covers the chest, and has their hair in what looks like a palm tree. First-Anime!Wrath is as bad or worse since it's that same outfit on a ten-year-old boy.
  • Gundam
    • Mobile Suit Gundam Age
      • The Vagan have some of the most goofy villain designs in a Gundam series. Behold Big Bad Lord Ezelcant with his enormous nose, chin strap, and corkscrew hair! Or Zanald Beihart's really ugly outfit with a beard, eyemask, and a hairpiece or helmet that resembles a nesting swan.
      • The Vagan pilot suits would be bad enough without the massive, weirdly-shaped codpieces. With them...dear lord. In particular, Desil's suit in Generation 1 has one that could plausibly function as a third leg.
      • A Vagan commander from the end of the third generation has bright red, curly, long '80s Hair, a headband, and Perma-Stubble. He wouldn't look out of place in a hair metal band.
    • Mobile Suit Gundam 00
      • After the first episode of the second season (or after the release of season 2's first character sketches), the fandom has been snickering hard upon the... outfits used by Ribbons and their followers. It is really difficult to take a man in pastels seriously. Especially when he has a "chest window". And the less said about their party outfits, the better. Hilling Care, WTF is up with that tux of yours?
      • Graham Aker was a whole lot cooler when he wasn't wearing a goofy samurai outfit as Mr. Bushido.
      • The Trinity Team with their white and yellow spandex bike shorts definitely count as well. Nena looks fine in hers, but the problem is that Johan wears spandex shorts and Michael's own pants are horrible as well.
    • Okay, so Olba Frost from Gundam X wears a purple and white jacket. Fine, doesn't look that bad with the rest of his clothing. But the electric blue boots? Oh crap, that CLASHES.
    • Gundam SEED Destiny
      • Lord Djibril doesn't get out much. Which is a good thing, since his yellow suit and blue lipstick make him look like a complete idiot (he actually is a complete idiot).
      • The less said about Yuna's pajamas, the better. You won't be able to easily escape from them, though: they've become a huge Iconic Outfit.
    • Victory Gundam
      • Fuala Griffon thinks she rocks a look by using cat bells as earrings and putting on a pink spacesuit. She doesn't. It's a bit understandable that she's gone a little kooky from being spaced as punishment for her failures before being rescued.
      • Also, the Zanscare meetings become unintentionally hilarious when you see either grunts or commanders wearing really stupid-looking old-fashioned wigs. Even people who do realize the parallels between the Zanscare "fashion" and traditional looks associated to some officer posts are... weirded out, to say but politely.
    • Then there's Harry Ord from ∀ Gundam. Huge red bug-eyed sunglasses aside, his formal night clothes consist of a black-and-yellow-striped suit, he wears purple star-patterned pajamas to sleep and his idea of a civilian disguise is a dorky black and yellow sweater waistcoat over a pink shirt and bright red trousers. However, unlike most examples in the franchise, he is firmly on the heroes' side after some initial misunderstanding and conflict, as his loyalty lies with his queen, Dianna Soriel, who simply wants to peacefully reintegrate the Moonrace back on Earth and end the hostilities between her bodyguards and the local militias.
    • Despite '80s Hair being the norm of the UC era, Full Frontal is arguably this with the juxtaposition of his 19th century-styled popped collar and military uniform with his outrageously fluffy mullet, which also makes him look chubbier than he actually is and harder to take seriously.
  • About half of the main villains in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure suffer from this. You probably won't find many fans, even hardcore ones, who disagree with the statement that the characters look like they're from a glam version of Fist of the North Star. Although considering the franchise is essentially fueled by outrageous Camp, this isn't typically seen as a mark against it.
    • The Pillar Men wear nothing but loincloths and over-the-top Mayincatec accessories. In Eyes of Heaven Joseph in his Tequila Joseph skin (based off an incident where Joseph badly failed a Harmless Lady Disguise) lampshades it when pitted against Esidisi, claiming that they have no right to criticize his costume when they're half-naked.
    • Most villains would never be able to get away with half of the costumes Dio Brando wears throughout Stardust Crusaders. Like his orange jacket and crotchless pants with green heart headband, belt and kneepads, and pointed shoes. Also, his Renfield, Vanilla Ice, has an even sillier outfit. Has anyone in Dio's inner circle ever heard of pants?
    • Diavolo borders on, but comes up just short of Creepy Crossdresser. But really, all of the villains of this Part (with the sole exception of Prosciutto) fall into this to some extent. Illuso's outfit is entirely puffed quilted fabric (which must have been really expensive). Pesci wears a black bodysuit with pink hearts on it. Melone wears a facemask and a dark suit with most of the torso cut out. Risotto Nero wears striped pants, a hat with bells on it, a Badass Longcoat, and no shirt. Making things sillier, early narration claims that the Mafia generally wear normal clothes in order to blend in, even though almost all of the other mafiosi presented throughout the Part wear... well, nothing that blends in.
    • Yoshikage Kira, Enrico Pucci, and Funny Valentine suffer from this the least, as Kira wears business suitsnote , Pucci wears a priest's robe, and Valentine wears a suit and a Badass Longcoat. Their hair, however, is another question:
      • Kira starts out with relatively normal hair that makes him look like David Bowie, then spiky black hair after swapping faces with Kosaku Kawajiri, but after he gains the power of Bites The Dust, he gets slicked back hair with green (colored manga) or white (anime) and black stripes.
      • Pucci's hair becomes more and more of this as time goes on. First it's just shore short, dyed white, and attached to his eyebrows. Then he grows sideburns and cuts them at angles and shaves geometric shapes into his hair. Finally, his hair and eyebrows form a star shape and he grows ponytails.
      • Valentine's hair looks as if he ripped the banisters off several model staircases and glued them to his skull.
    • DIO's sons also have strange styles as well, though Rikiel's cow-print shirt and pants take the cake.
    • The grand majority of recruited Stand users in Stone Ocean fall under this. From Johngalli A's outfit sporting many circular holes with round patches dangling from his shirt, Miraschon's hair remaining connected with hanging bangs somehow connecting with each other in an oval shape, Sports Maxx's relatively normal outfit decorated with endless comma signs and boasting circles for eyebrows, D an G's fluffy toga and pickelhaube helmet, Guccio's stripperific outfit with revealing shoulders, hips, and midriff or Miuccia Miuler wearing a sweater shaped like intestines with dangling eyeball-esque accessories from it. The irony of most of Part 6's characters getting their names from fashion brands or designers hasn't been lost on anyone.
      • Part 6's Lang Rangler, as they defy even the franchise's standards as what can be considered clothing. With Lang Rangler using a helmet with holes for eyes... that cover his eyes in the middle, wearing a body armor jumpsuit painted in a sickly brown in both the colored manga and anime that leaves him barefoot... despite him having dangling shoes from his ankles. Worst part? Unlike Secco, his Stand isn't manifested as a suit, Jumpin' Jack Flash is separate from his body... This is simply his normal everyday outfit, as his Prisoner Card shows him wearing this same armor.
      • Ironically, the only exception to this trend is Viviano Westwood, who still manages to stand out with his standard prison guard's uniform and buzzcut in a series where even Villains of the Week can have outrageous outfits.
    • Steel Ball Run has some as well.
      • Oyecomova wears a jacket, a pair of boots, a beret with a funeral veil on it, a metallic sarashi, and a gladiatorial kilt that emphasizes his pale skin and clock-vine tattoos. At least the veil has an explanation, since it's supposed to keep sunlight and bugs out of his face, but then there are the wisps of hair coming out of his beret. There's also his facial tattoos, which are supposed to resemble the American flag.
      • Pork Pie Hat Kid has a bunch of reeds or pipes tied to his head that look nothing like a pork pie hat.
      • Magent Magent has a quilted fabric jacket like Illuso's, but this time with studs.
    • The Rock Humans in JoJolion proudly continue this tradition, with Yotsuyu's spiky green bodysuit, cropped top and floral-printed bloomers, Aisho wearing a bunch of sleeves around his neck and one as a hat, Tamaki is sporting both retina-searing pink aviator sunglasses and the worst comb-over in manga history (to the point where the Hishigakatas cannot believe he managed to get a date with Hato), Urban Guerrilla's weird breathing apparatus/hood/goggles headpiece, and Poor Tom, who, aside from his shorts and sandals, has seemingly drawn his clothes over his body. The exceptions so far are the A. Phex twins, whose footballer-inspired uniforms are fairly normal, Doctor Wu Tomoki's pretty mundane medical outfitnote , and Satoru Akefu's dapper suit and hat.
      • Played straight with the leader of the Rock Humans, Toru. While his outfit looks normal from afar, his outfit has some oddities such as his seemingly black round hat being an afro shaped like that, pants with floral patterns of a sickly yellow color in the colored manga, or the Big Bad of this part wearing teddy bears on his shoulders.
  • Episode 17 of Kill la Kill had Ragyo Kiryuin wear something that looks like a cross between Kefka, Rita Repulsa and Walpurgisnacht. Given that she is filthy rich and a fashion designer, this is most likely an intentional parody of extravagant "haute couture" outfits worn by real-life celebrities - Ragyo has been nicknamed "Lady Gaga" by the fans for a good reason.
  • This is a specialty of Mamoru Nagano. Probably the best example would be Possoidal, the Big Bad of Heavy Metal L-Gaim. It takes a special kind of person to wear curtain rods as epaulettes. And then there's at least half the cast of The Five Star Stories...
  • Marvel Anime: X-Men: Magneto's costume in this version looks suspiciously like he's wearing a diaper.
  • My Hero Academia villains have this to the extreme. Tomura Shigaraki's first outfit is literally just a v-neck black long-sleeved shirts, red sneakers, and black pants. The only evil part of his outfit is the severed hands that cover a crusty face... and those are the subject of many, many memes. Dabi has a face covered in skin grafts, with his costume looking straight out of Hot Topic. Himiko Toga and Mustard literally wear their school uniforms with accessories, while Spinner looks even more like a Ninja Turtle than Stain does. To be fair, most of the heroes aren't much better.
  • While Naruto generally averts this, with most villains having outfits much simpler than average for Shōnen (probably a necessity because everyone moves around so much), two examples still stick out: Orochimaru's otherwise normal usual outfit with the huge purple rope he wears as a belt that is tied up in a ribbon on his back (Sasuke after the Time Skip also has a rope-belt like that, but it's tied at the front and much smaller) and the outfit Sasuke wears after fighting Itachi and joining Akatsuki with the ridiculously over-sized collar.
  • While many characters in One Piece wear pretty outrageous things no matter what side they're on, some villains particularly stand out:
    • The World Nobles wear a ridiculous spacesuit-like costume with bubbles over their heads (it's to prevent them from breathing the same air as commoners).
    • Gecko Moria looks like the result of fusing Dracula with the Joker and a pumpkin.
    • Most of the Big Mom pirates wear ridiculously bright and gaudy candy-themed clothes.
    • Donquixote Donflamingo takes the cake. He wears an unbuttoned white shirt, obscenely loud pink and orange patterned capri pants, red sunglasses that look like they came out of Elton John's wardrobe, and a pink coat made of feathers. It seems to be a theme for his gang, too, as his brother had a similar, albeit black, coat, a silly hat, and makeup while many others are equally off in fashion.
    • Diamante, one of Donflamingo's lieutenants, wears tight red pants, a red cape, and a massive collar that makes him resemble a sunflower. At least the cape has a practical use- Diamante's power allows him to give objects the properties of cloth while retaining their own properties (i.e. metal remains strong). That cape is actually a massive steel plate he used his powers on and uses as armor.
      • Doflamingo's subordinate Señor Pink dresses in baby clothes, but at least he has an excuse- his beloved wife Russian is in a vegetative state, and Pink dressing up in his baby son's clothes was the only thing that could make her smile despite her condition.
  • Pokémon: Giratina and the Sky Warrior gives us Zero, a villain so obsessed with obtaining Giratina's powers that he wears a Giratina-themed jumpsuit, including the half-rings around the midsection and neck. It doesn't help that he has a long neck brace, which due to going down his front, resembles a giant red bib, with a '0' numeral printed onto it.
  • Enishi Yukishiro from Rurouni Kenshin. What's with the blue muscle shirt, Chinese pants, and Round Hippie Shades? Does he dress in the dark?
  • If you're a female villain or Monster of the Week in Sailor Moon, you will have a bad outfit. The rare exceptions are good guys turned into bad guys (Black Lady, Mistress 9) or the Big Bad (Sailor Galaxia, Queen Nehellenia, Queen Beryl), and even then, some of them have questionable tastes. This is rather ironic when you consider that many of those outfits were inspired by actual runway designs.
  • Science Ninja Team Gatchaman: Your average Galactor captain of the week will have a terrible costume fashion-wise. Spikes, masks, bright colors, capes, usually all tied together with an animal theme. An aversion was a sign of Heel–Face Turn and Redemption Equals Death.
  • In Shiki, if you are one of the titular Shiki, if you aren't a mook, you get a fabulous outfit. Tatsumi apparently has cat ears as expressive hair and an outfit that probably gets him a lot of willing female Shiki. Then there's the Shiki who apparently is Vampire Lady Gaga. Sunako has utterly insane hair and a Victorian dress, and Megumi's fashion fails could get a page of their own.
  • When Sugata joins the Glittering Crux in Star Driver, he comes out wearing... this. Even in a show full of Camp Straight, and bad fashion choices, his outfit just goes beyond.
  • Tiger & Bunny gives us Jake Martinez, who manages to be terrifying while looking like... Well, picture the phrase "glam rock serial killer".
    • It seems to be deliberately invoked, since he mocks the heroes' getups at one point. Exactly how much that helps the outfit is left up to the viewer, however.
    • Lunatic's costume is either creepy or so over-the-top that it circles back into this trope. The bugging eyes on his mask and the hand-like shape on it (which Kotetsu even mocks at one point) don't help.
  • Tokyo Ghoul: The outfit that Uta wore upon his return in Tokyo Ghoul Re sent the fandom into fits of laughter upon its appearance. Kinda hard to look unsettling when you're wearing a giant zebra print coat and matching pants.
  • Voltes V: Throughout the series, we're told of Planet Boazania's Evil Emperor Zambajil. We're told of how he wants to enslave the entire galaxy, looks down on the human race, subjects his slaves to whippings and hard labour and arranged multiple assassination attempts on his nephew's life due to him being the true heir to the throne. Many Boazanian refugees speak of Zambajil's name with fear, shuddering as they recall his tyranny, while members of his own court speak of his name with praise and adoration. Thing is, when the audience finally gets a proper look at Zambajil, he looks like a king from a playing card crossed with a horned humanoid, making him difficult to take seriously despite how monstrous he is.

    Comic Books 
  • Marvel Comics
    • This flash animation gives us Marvel's less-than-stellar choices in villainous fashions. At least Galactus and Loki have an excuse.
      Loki: He's got a point! I'm a god! Why should I care what people think of my appearance?
    • In the tie-in comic for Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Dante even comments, upon looking at him, that adding a cape and a cane, Galactus would be the biggest pimp he'd ever seen.
    • Also from Marvel, we have Black Talon. Deadpool's encounter with him says it all.
    • And Mysterio, who wears what appears to be an upside-down goldfish bowl on his head. This is especially hilarious because he's supposed to be a Master of Illusion, yet he apparently has never thought that it might be a good idea to create the illusion that he isn't wearing an upside-down goldfish bowl on his head. Eventually they caught on, and when his illusionary gas was enhanced by Dr. Doom, he went around town with the rest of Spider-Man's Rogues Gallery in various disguises — a metal band, a punk band, and a schoolboy — with the rest of them as schoolgirls. They didn't know how they appeared.
      • A charming cartoonist named Katie Cook has lampshaded the fishbowl effect.
      • The exact same thing was done in the first Spider-Man Playsation game, if "What If?" mode was activated.
      • It seems that everyone has made fun of Mysterio's headgear — Marvel Ultimate Alliance has Spidey bringing it up if he's part of your team on the helicarrier, for example. In fact, "fishbowl for a head" is Spidey's favorite method of addressing him.
      • They fixed that in Ultimate Spider-Man where he loses the fishbowl and instead just has a vaguely head-shaped cloud of fog drifting above the metal device he wears around his shoulders. It's actually rather creepy but still, the beads he wears around his left hand look kind of silly.
      • He's been described as having been dressed by the Liberace Space Program.
      • Spider-Man: Far From Home faithfully recreates Mysterio's infamous costume and even has Beck himself describe it as "ridiculous", but manages the impressive effort of making it look surprisingly good, as well as giving a clever reason for why it's so tacky; it's a clumsy mixture of traits copied from various superhero costumes (Thor's cape, Iron Man's Powered Armor, Dr. Strange's eye motif, etc.) to go along with Mysterio's Fake Ultimate Hero bit.
    • Electro is another Spider-Man villain who gets a lot of gaffe for his costume. The main thing is that mask resembles a starfish made of lightning bolts, but the rest of his lightning bolt-bedazzled costume is pretty ridiculous too. Jim Rhodes was none too pleased about having to impersonate him once. The Spectacular Spider-Man averts this by giving him an army green insulation suit, and having his mask become real electricity that obscures his face. It's considerably cooler looking. A number of other adaptations avert it these days by going with his Ultimate Marvel version, a blue-white electric Energy Being.
    • The obscure Marvel comic Thunderstrike featured a villain named Carjack whose specialty was, well, carjacking. Truly a worthy opponent to the successor of the Norse god of thunder. He wore a brown trenchcoat, purple pants, huge boots and gloves, and a Dr. Doom-style metallic mask—with dreadlocks. It says a lot when Linkara gives him the nickname "Doctor Dumb."
    • Iron Man villain Obadiah Stane debuted in quite the crazy number. A sleeveless longcoat in purple and orange, no shirt beneath it, a gaudy pendant worthy of Destro, and a jewel on his forehead. By the time he took over Stark International, though, Stane had thankfully discarded this getup (including the forehead jewel) for more tasteful business suits (and, eventually, the Iron Monger armor).
    • Screaming Mimi, who went around committing crimes first by dressing as some sort of evil ballet dancer / wrestler, in a belly-exposing pale green number, with a comically oversized ruff and pixie boots, before moving on to a sort of vague "evil scarecrow" look. The upgrade to Songbird of the Thunderbolts did her a massive favour. She regards her days as a supervillain as an Old Shame for more than just the crimes she committed...
      • Another of the Thunderbolts, Moonstone, also used the team to ditch her original "piss-yellow" suit and a silly helmet with bug-like eyes.
      • Ditto with Abner Jenkins, who, well, he tried, especially in his second suit, but a green and purple bug costume was never exactly going to rank among the greats, and his Heel–Face Turn as Mach allowed him to turn down the bug theme and take some cues from people like Iron Man whose power suits did not look like failed attempts to design a Kamen Rider OC.
    • Loki's... interesting fashion sense gets lampshaded repeatedly in Ms. Marvel (2014), where the characters decide he must be a Hipster. Amusingly, he instantly knows who people are addressing when they say "Hipster Viking" - and doesn't seem to mind the nickname. (At this point he's more of an Anti-Hero, but he's still got an eccentric outfit complete with Horns of Villainy and black nail polish.)
    • As an example of what Silver Age villains could look like, the original X-Men faced a professor calling himself the Locust, with a costume to match. And that was one of the tamer cases.
  • DC Comics:
    • The Penguin's sense of style is about a century out of date. It actually ties into his personality and motivation, as he wants to restore his family's place in high society but doesn't really understand how the upper class live.
    • The Flash villain The Rainbow Raider, whose armor, wristbands, and boots are painted in blazing rainbow stripes. Admittedly, he is colorblind, so it's not really his fault, but still.
    • Doom Patrol villain Codpiece. He has a laser cannon mounted exactly where you would guess he does from that name, and while he was actually pretty damn dangerous with it, the costume was no less hilarious for many reasons. Then again he fought The Doom Patrol who are... weird...
    • The Warlord (DC): Deimos. Between the pixie boots, the bare midriff, the long, dangling loincloth, the random high collar, and the huge sleeves, there's something here for everybody to laugh at.
    • Sometime during the '90s, DC introduced Nightwing's future self from an alternate reality. He started out as a good guy before being turned to the dark side rather quickly and becoming Deathwing. He was neither the first Bat-family member to pull a Face–Heel Turn nor the last, but he was certainly the worst dressed. Spikes of Villainy. Mullet. Nipple piercing. Only half a shirt, but an enormous 1970s collar to compensate. Surely, it all made sense in the mind of a madman. Then, in a shocking twist, it turned out he was actually just some guy who had no relation to Nightwing whatsoever and wasn't really from the future. It was the '90s.
    • Keith Giffen's Mister Nebula, a parody of Galactus, might as well be the best example of this trope, considering instead of eating planets, this guy travels around the Universe in his Nebulamobile, redecorating planets according to his own sense of aesthetics, which has a distinctive tasteless flair. He was originally a particularly incompetent interior designer who annoyed the Lords of Order and got thrown into an alternate dimension. He went mad in there and returned more obsessed and powerful than ever, to the point even the JLI couldn't really scratch him. J'onn stopped his attempt to remake Earth in his gauche image by taking him to Vegas and convincing him we were fully on board with his ideas but wanted to do the remodeling ourselves. Nebula, shedding a tear of pride, accepted.
    • Most of the Crime Syndicate members in Justice League looked pretty ridiculous in their first appearance, but Owlman takes the cake.
    • Brainiac has had his appearance retooled many, many times, but his original cover portrayal consisted of a tight-fitting, legless pink unitard and matching boots. Presumably his budget allowed for either super-science devices that could go toe-to-toe with Superman, or pants, but not both. (famously, a Cartoon Network ad mocking ''Superfriends'' had Brainiac going "I just want some pants! A decent pair of pants!")
    • Similarly, Darkseid has a well-deserved reputation as one of DC's ultimate villains, but most artists since his original appearance have tried to gently shift him away from wearing a hooded leotard with an optional miniskirt and towards something a little more befitting of a Galactic Conqueror Physical God.
    • Robin's first reaction when seeing The Flamingo, a master assassin who eats people's faces, was "I was expecting scary, not gay".
    • No bad costume list could ever be complete without the first Chronos from The DCU. Bright yellow boots; black and white striped leggings (vertical stripes at that); a red, yellow, and green leotard with an hourglass symbol on the chest; and a flowing yellow cape with a high collar, topped off with a white wrestling mask that has a clock's hour and minute hands painted on it. Mercifully, the outfit was replaced for his appearance on Justice League Unlimited.
    • Superman's Evil Counterpart Ultraman has worn some spectacularly ridiculous get-ups over the years. In the Pre-Crisis era, he wore a blue bodystocking with massive shoulder spikes. In the Post-Crisis era, he wore footie pajamas with bubbles on the stomach. The New 52 finally gave him a better costume closely modeled on Superman's.
    • Martian Manhunter had the villain Human flame, who fought using flamethrowers (J'onns weakness). He hasn't shown up for a long time, however, since his flamethrowers came from his nipples.
    • Two-Face from the Batman universe often plays with this trope. His whole deal is that (a) he has a split personality with half of his persona being a fairly-sane lawyer and the other half being an absolutely crazed lunatic and (b) half of his face has been burned off, so to both represent his fractured psyche and to match his damaged facial/physical appearance he's usually put in a mismatched suit which is essentially two halves of different suits stitched together in the middle to form one. A common element is to have the 'normal' side be a fairly typical man's professional suit, while the 'damaged' side is often a bit more outlandish, whether it's a non-typical bright colour, a rather loud pattern such as checkers or pinstripes, or... whatever was going on with the Batman Forever version
    • Wonder Woman's third foe to go by Cheetah (Post-Crisis Barbara Minerva) wears pants that manage to look like they're some type of hideous extra-revealing chaps since they're cheetah print pants with black outer panels and she herself is cheetah print while powered up.
    • Deathstroke's classic outfit is an eye-searingly bright combo of teal scale armor with orange accessories, including the obligatory "underwear outside the pants" and a pair of bizarre, pirate-style boots with enormous cuffs on them that fold all the way down to his ankles. The overall impression is less like he's a master assassin and more like he's on his way to a rave. Revisions of his outfit have generally replaced the teal with darker blue or even black, streamlined the boots, and given the armor a more modern, plated appearance.
  • A lot of Golden/Silver Age villains have costumes that look somewhat outdated today, which is why it's a good thing a lot of them have been updated. They include (and are not limited to...)
  • In Flight 714, Tintin's arch-nemesis Roberto Rastapopopulos, who had until then shown an impeccable taste in clothes, suddenly decides to put on a bizarre pink-and-cream cowboy outfit. He then undergoes a long and painful Villain Decay throughout the story, and the cartoonist later admitted that it was the clothes that did it. Seeing his villain in that outfit had made him lose all respect for the guy.
  • The al-Qaeda leader in Holy Terror is a 4-foot-tall man whose entire body is wrapped up in robes... which just happen to have beads covering up his arms, feet, and face. And the normal terrorists have their entire face except their eyes and mouth wrapped up, making them look like mummies.

    Fan Works 
  • Lucius Malfoy gets made fun of for his dandy outfits in The Parselmouth of Gryffindor. Specifically, after signing a letter "Your humble servant, Lucius Malfoy", he gets the following reply:
    Stop calling yourself 'humble', honorifics or not. Considering how you dress, it's not even funny, it's ludicrous.
  • In the first two installments of the MRA Trilogy, both main antagonists (Elsa in the first and Benezia in the second) are Straw Feminist characters who wear tuxedos with strap-ons attached. Additionally, Anna is a My Immortal style goth, Udina is a Tumblr hipster and Soren a Leatherman stereotype. The Villain Protagonist herself is described as dressing in horribly mismatched and ridiculously skimpy clothes.
  • This trope is spoofed in The Return, where Big Bad Alexia and her Dragon Aurora continually dress like catwalk models with OTT fake tans and makeup and are mercilessly mocked by the heroes. Thanks to an Evil Makeover Dark Mercury also comes in for ribbing, but she is acting more as a Card-Carrying Villain on purpose so probably feels she needs the rather hideous and impractical get-up.
  • The parody crossover Harry Potter in the Realm of Dungeons & Dragons plays with this. Harry, Ron, and Hermione wind up in the realm of the animated show Dungeons & Dragons (1983), where much amusement is gotten from the fact that the D&D kids regularly face off with "a one-horned devil in an evening gown."
  • In Mao Grou, a Kung Fu Panda fanfic, everyone (yes, even the protagonists) is a Fashion-Victim Villain. The biggest offender is, probably fittingly enough, Josef Stalin.
  • My Immortal takes this to its logical conclusion, where all the bad guys are stereotypical preps wearing pink. It even depicts Voldemort wearing high heels.
  • Queen of All Oni: Minor villain Lung, at least in the opinion of Tarakudo. And since the former's described as looking like "Ming The Merciless' Goth cousin", the latter may have a point.
  • In Shadows Awakening, Jade feels this way about her Enemy Within, the Queen of the Shadowkhan. The narration somewhat agrees with her, at least so far as commenting that the Queen's dress is far too revealing for a prepubescent girl.
  • Lampshaded in All You Need Is Love in Naomi's narration when she observes that poor Mello seems to think dressing like a hooker with a leather fetish is badass and intimidating.
  • Hero Chat: In-Universe. The team brings up the fact that some of the akuma look...bad. Nino is especially annoyed because some of them are great, so it's not like Hawkmoth is just universally terrible at designing villains.
    Nino: You think he still has the kinda cool "dark prom" aesthetic? Or did the effort of fusion mean he went back to clown outfits.
    Alya: You're still upset about Bubbler, aren't you?
  • In-Universe and a major plot point in Hawkmoth gets a Reference. The first chapter has Hawkmoth learning of an online list that makes fun of many of his terrible-looking Akumas, with even his own outfit a target of mockery. It doesn't help that Nooro tells him that the akuma's look majorly came from his head with only minor influences from his targets. This leads him to improve his compatibility with the Butterfly Miraculous and watching anime for more references to improve the akuma appearance, ultimately boosting their own power in addition.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Films featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000 seem to love this trope.
    • Operation Double 007 has the main, middle-aged male villain dressing in a flowy silver caftan and (at the end) a skintight red pleather suit.
    Joel: You're dressed as a space angel. Why?
    Troxartas: Give her something of yours, then... something billowy and soft...
    Crow: Wait — something of mine...
    • The Pumaman has Donald Pleasence as Big Bad Kobras wearing a girly black and silver tunic.
      Mike Nelson: My name is Pleasance and I am funky!
    • The main villain from Cave Dwellers, with his ridiculous "Swan Helmet".
    • Prince of Space has the Phantom of Krankor and his chicken suit... with no freaking undergarments. Shots below the waist were quite terrifying to behold for all the wrong reasons.
    • The cone-headed invaders from Invasion of the Neptune Men.
    • Xenos, the evil priest king from Outlaw of Gor. Even the fact that he was played by the incredibly badass Jack Palance couldn't make up for the fact that he was wearing a long dress and a hat that looked like an opening seed pod.
    • The Big Bad from Wizards of the Lost Kingdom parades around in a deeply improbable crab-shaped headdress. Jonah and the bots immediately dub it "Crabby" and promote it to wacky sidekick.
  • James Bond
    • A utilitarian example occurs in Dr. No. The protective suit the title character wears at the end of the film is Narmtastic.
    • Graves' power suit from Die Another Day looks like The Angry Video Game Nerd dressed up in all his NES accessories. They then had the gall to attempt a deep, emotional drama scene immediately after we first see him in it.
  • The above was parodied at the end of Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery. The clear see-thru suit Dr. Evil is wearing seems to serve no useful purpose, other than making him comically slide off chairs whenever he tries to sit on them.
    Dr. Evil: Mr. Powers, how do you like my quasi-futuristic attire? I designed it myself.
  • The Masters of the Universe movie. Frank Langella's golden Skeletor costume, acquired after he achieves ultimate power, plows a line right through Narm and crosses back over to Awesome again. It's like a gay metallic Chiquita Banana-tor. See?
  • An example occurs in the live-action Dr. Seuss movie The 5,000 Fingers Of Dr. T. The costume the titular mad conductor wears at the end is probably the most flamboyant example of this trope ever made. The villain's dress-up routine even gets its own song written about it.
  • Insidious had the demon with the red face, though it's hard to see due to the shots rarely focusing on his figure until the end of the film, he wears something akin to a tight black leather full-body catsuit, with boots with black fur up until his kneecaps, with the hair of a 60-year-old and using black earrings. Alone, the demon is much more ridiculous than outright scary, but the movie is capable of portraying him as so.
  • Batman
    • While the franchise is partially based around silly costumes, Riddler's light-up jacket from Batman Forever qualifies. Riddler spent the entire movie getting steadily more ridiculous, culminating in a costume containing five thousand pounds of glitter. It's so bad he makes a joke about it:
    Riddler: Like the jacket? It keeps me safe when I'm jogging at night.
    • Two-Face's outfit in the same film gives him a run for his money. The "evil" half of the costume incorporates a fluorescent-pink-and-black zebra stripe suit and a yellow leopard-print shirt and tie combo (he also has a tuxedo with the "evil" half patterned on a Hawaiian shirt).
    • Mr. Freeze from Batman & Robin spends one scene singing and dancing to the Snow Miser's song from The Year Without a Santa Claus while wearing a polar bear bathrobe and matching slippers (pictured above). Just another nail in the series' coffin. Not that the other villains are exempt, with Bane resembling a Mexican luchador and Poison Ivy with horn hair and this outrageous costume that made The Vamp instead look like a Drag Queen.
    • The Joker as he appeared in Suicide Squad (2016) wore a number of garish outfits that make the character's usual purple suit look tasteful by comparison. While he admittedly looks cool in the black tux and white bowtie he wears in a couple of scenes, it seems he prefers to wear glittery jackets with brightly-colored, half-buttoned silk shirts, and he even spends a significant portion of the movie in a dark purple crocodile-skin duster and baggy blue pants while shirtless and barefoot — and none of this is helped by the character's metal teeth, shaved eyebrows, and gaudy tattoos. His henchmen look even worse, wearing a random assortment of bizarre masks that have no real coordination or consistent theme.
  • Xerxes in 300 wears a gold cape and speedo and is covered in gold chains and facial piercings. While he already looks nothing like the real Xerxes, the bizarre wardrobe choices push his appearance straight into the ridiculous. The facial piercings are a shared trait among the Persians, while the speedo seems to be a universal trait in the film's warped version of reality.
  • Averted in Labyrinth: clothes that would look ridiculous on a lesser man actually look pretty spectacular on David Bowie.
  • In its deconstruction of superheroes, Watchmen features a lot of snide comments about the intentionally silly costumes that heroes and villains wear. Veidt's bright purple-and-gold suit and mask are overtly compared to Studio 54 excess - while featuring sculpted nipples to intentionally invoke those that adorn our What The Hell, Costuming Department? page.
  • Evilene in the Sidney Lumet version of The Wiz wore a large, garish-looking dress which, like many items in the movie, seemed to be made of garbage.
  • A rare narmless example is Anton Chigurh of No Country for Old Men. His bizarre appearance and mannerisms only contribute to his utterly terrifying presence.
  • Zorg (and his weird head-covering... thing) in The Fifth Element, though the whole universe is filled with outrageous fashion.
  • This is almost the point of The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Perhaps the bustier is more of a Creepy Crossdresser thing, but as Frank-N-Furter is so pale, his green surgical scrubs reflect up into his face and make him look like a dead ringer for Kermit the Frog in drag and a grade-A fashion victim.
  • Darius Sayle in Stormbreaker. Because nothing says "scary villain" like Mickey Rourke in a white pimp coat and Jack Sparrow makeup.
  • Matthew Patel in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is dressed pretty ridiculously, to the point where someone actually thinks he's dressed like a pirate. Patel responds defensively:
    Matthew Patel: Pirates are in this year!
    • Patel is deliberately portrayed as a typical over-the-top Bollywood villain.
  • Even for the '80s, Velvet Von Ragnar, played by Gene Simmons from the movie Never Too Young to Die, had hilariously bad fashion sense.
  • In Dungeons & Dragons (2000), Profion's sidekick Damodar wears neon blue lipstick for some reason. Damodar becomes the Big Bad in the sequel, somehow losing his badassery.
  • In Zoolander, Mugatu looks like an unholy mixture of Satan, Cruella DeVille, and a poodle. He also dresses up as a young German boy during the brainwashing scene in a ridiculous attempt to look like a child.
  • Funnily enough, Javier Bardem's two best-known characters fall prey to this trope. But where Skyfall's Raoul Silva has a tendency to dress oddly, Anton Chigurh's strange 70s haircut only serves to make him scarier.
  • Cobra Commander from G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. After switching to the metal full-head helmet, suddenly his skinniness becomes more apparent and he looks like a bobblehead or lollipop. One of the few cases where Shoulders of Doom might help. It's made exponentially worse by the fact that the helmet itself looks really weird and nothing like anything the character has ever worn before, and it gets downright embarrassing when you see the new, more cartoon-accurate costume he gets in the sequel, which looks awesome and translates to live-action really well.
  • Kick-Ass 2: The Motherfucker's new costume is pieced together from bondage equipment, and thus is black leather covered in zippers and chains. He's even treated as this In-Universe.
  • Let's face it, the helmet that Shaw wears and Erik takes in X-Men: First Class, to block telepathy is a little ridiculous looking. Lampshaded by Shaw when he invades the CIA building where Xavier's team is staying, and on learning Xavier isn't present quips, "Well, at least I can take this silly thing off." And as silly as it looks with Shaw, it's even worse when Erik has it repainted into the same metallic red color scheme as the comic book and adds the horns to the front. It's no wonder the sequel toned it down considerably.
  • Cinderella (2015):
    • Lady Tremaine's leopard-printed morning gown.
    • The stepsisters as well, taking after their mother. The art book describes their styles as being pleasing if not for a few too-bright colours or a few too-large ribbons and such.
  • The General in the 1964 film version of Lord Jim, who sports an atrocious crew-cut hairstyle, a moustache-less beard, and, in one scene, a waistcoat, which don't help his General Zod-ish appearance.
  • The villain of Jackie Chan's The Spy Next Door ends up being this after his original outfit is damaged in the opening. Most of the rest of his role in the movie is him being dressed in increasingly tacky outfits.
  • Dr. Doom's outfit at the climax of Fantastic Four (2015). It looks like he's covered himself in plastic bags and saran wrap. The fact that he already looks like a metallic crash test dummy with Tron Lines really doesn't help.
  • As portrayed in the end of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Grindelwald. The platinum blonde slick-backed undercut is a questionable choice, but villains have been known to make weirder work. The tiny creep mustache barely lighter than his skin, though, that's just ridiculous.
  • The Grandmaster from Thor: Ragnarok. An absurd robe with enormous sparkly gold lapels, plus the matching Melt Stick.
  • Supreme Leader Snoke in The Last Jedi ditches the series' usual Evil Wears Black for a sparkly gold bathrobe that wouldn't look out of place on Hugh Hefner. It's so jarringly out-of-place from what we've come to expect from Star Wars that it's strangely awesome, showing us that Snoke has an ego larger than the Supremacy and is so arrogantly confident in his own mastery of the Dark Side that he doesn't even feel the need to wear the proper robes and armor.
  • De Nomolos from Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey is a Knight of Cerebus who is taken seriously. But it's difficult to take him seriously when he's got an outfit that includes a cape, a giant collar around his neck with built-in dramatic lighting, and giant floppy moon boots. However, Fridge Brilliance kicks in— aside from coloration, it's very similar to the futuristic attire not only seen on his soldiers but Rufus and his students. Considering that the construction of two robotic simulacrums of Bill and Ted would've been likely to cost a lot of money (if they even used it in the future), it's possible that he simply stole clothes and spraypainted them black for lack of any other options.
  • In Sleepy Hollow High, the slasher wears a leather Badass Longcoat and a jack-o-lantern mask. so far, so good. But he chooses to pair these with a Christmas sweater and check trousers.

  • Seen in-universe in the Rainbow Magic series with Jack Frost's Ice Blue clothing line, which are all odd, ugly, or hard to wear.
  • The Hermux Tantamoq Adventures: Tucka Mertslin is a cosmetics tycoon and a heavily parodied Large Ham. While never the Big Bad, she's always intertwined with that plot after some fashion. She dresses thusly
    Tucka towered over Hermux in her pink and green lizard-skin platform shoes. A huge cone-shaped hat added even more to her height. From the top of her hat sprang a fountain of metallic ribbons that fell past her waist. The shiny ribbons swirled about her body like a swarm of hungry eels and made it difficult to see her face clearly. What he could see of it was unsettling.
    Tucka's cheeks were dusted with a fine orange powder that gave her fur the appearance of being on fire. The whiskers above her smallish eyes had been extended so dramatically that they bobbed about like antennae nearly tangling in the ribbons. Her lips were drawn coal black, shiny and glistening. She smiled at him dangerously.
  • Though not all of them are villains, just about everyone from the Capitol in The Hunger Games is this, normally wearing garish clothing and way too much makeup. The first one we see in the films, Effie Trinket, wears a bright magenta suit and has so much powder on her face that it's completely white.
  • The Card-Carrying Villain Evil Harry Dread in The Last Hero wears a black leather kilt, black spiked gloves, black spiked shoulderpads, and a helmet with batwings, spikes and a skull. Made all the more ridiculous by the fact that he's a small, potbellied man with a grumpy expression.
    • In Eric, Lord Astfgl, the current ruler of Hell, favours a Big Red Devil form, looking like a humanoid in red clothes, a cap with small horns, and carrying a pitchfork (whose end tends to fall off). He is under the impression that this makes him look distinguished. Also subverted in that the protagonists don't find him remotely funny-looking once he has them cornered.
  • From Stephen King's universe, primarily Hearts in Atlantis, the Low Men In Yellow Coats. They're rat creatures who try to pose as human but haven't quite nailed how we dress, so they tend to wear flashy jewelry, checked suits, and bright yellow raincoats- just generally clothes that belong in the 1950s and were still tacky then.
  • In the Lord Of The Rings books, as Saruman turns fully evil (and Gandalf takes over from him as the White Wizard), he reintroduces himself as "Saruman of Many Colors," complete with rainbow robes. This actually makes perfect sense in context of LOTR lorenote . It was cut from the film version, though, since the production team were understandably uncomfortable asking the audience to take an evil rainbow wizard seriously with no context.
  • Good thing The Guardians of Childhood is a book series. Otherwise, it would have been difficult to take the monstrous Big Bad Pitch seriously, with his bristled long hair and an ornate overcoat with outrageously spiked shoulders and ridiculously High Collar of Doom.
  • Pope Peter, the head of the Enigma One World New Faith, wears obscenely gaudy multi-colored papal robes, which incorporate colors and symbols from every religion imaginable. He's described as looking "as if he had earned some double doctorate from Black Light Discotheque University”.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Babylon Berlin's Alfred Nyssen - being a ridiculously wealthy Upper-Class Twit - is only seen walking around in the gaudiest bespoke clothing that Weimar Germany has to offer - most notably Oxford baggies, extra-wide trousers sewn from sackcloth.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000 has had plenty of movies that feature this trope (see above). Even Dr. Forrester himself, after Joel and the bots discuss world domination schemes and costumes following the Undersea Kingdom short in the Attack of the Giant Leeches episode.
    Joel: You can bet that anybody seriously interested in world domination is gonna end up looking like a real snickerdoodle.
    Dr. Forrester: (in a ridiculous outfit) What is that supposed to mean?! I'll deal with you later! Back to the drill, Frank. You will bow down before me, Son of Jor-El! Bow down!
  • Doctor Who:
    • At the end of the TV movie, the Master switches from his previous Terminator-esque outfit, into what is supposed to be Time Lord formal wear, most famous for its abundance in "The Deadly Assassin". The serial was aired twenty-one years before the movie, however, so introducing it without any explanation (nor the outfit's nice hat) results in this trope.
    • The New Paradigm Daleks (introduced in "Victory of the Daleks") were supposed to replace the bronze Dalek design used since the revival in 2005 with their unique, brightly colored casings. They, however, looked patently ridiculous (snarky audience comparisons to Power Rangers aren't uncommon), and the bronze Daleks were quickly brought back and the New Paradigm Daleks quietly shunted to background cameos at best.
    • Skagra, the villain of "Shada", dresses in a spectacularly tasteless disco outfit - a belted white tunic, a sparkly fedora, a glittery silver cape, a v-neck, and shiny white high-waisted trousers tucked into silver platform boots - while carrying around a carpetbag. In the university district of Cambridge. In 1979, which is when the disco era had just started its terminal decline. Script notes indicate that he was supposed to look utterly ridiculous.
  • The short-lived Sid and Marty Krofft superheroine series Electra Woman and Dyna Girl featured some truly crazed villain outfits, but special mention must be paid to evil musician Glitter Rock, who wore a huge sparkling green afro wig paired with equally enormous star-shaped sunglasses. Glitter rock musicians' outfits tended strongly to the ridiculous, even for the '70s. Glitter Rock's outfit was ridiculous by glitter rock standards.
  • In The Mighty Boosh, Vince is such a fashionista that he'll always comment on the villain's taste, whether good or bad. Vince, more of a hero (sort of), makes some pretty eccentric fashion choices.
  • Every Goa'uld overlord on Stargate SG-1 qualifies for this trope. Bad taste must be encoded in Goa'uld DNA. Along with Dr. Doom rhetoric.
    • Ba'al swings widely: from looking like he's wearing a bathrobe to leather longcoats... (and don't forget the biggest aversion — the rather spiffing suit he wore when pretending to be an executive on Earth!)
    • Zipacna is the worst: His first appearance he wore what looked like a straw hat and a Hawaiian shirt. This is supposed to be "traditional" Mayan dress, given that he's impersonating one of their deities.
    • There's also Lord Yu-huang Shang Ti, the Jade Emperor, who not only dresses like a Chinese emperor, but he actually was the first Chinese emperor, meaning he created this style. Except for the fact that the style of dress Yu wears is actually traditional Manchu dress which was imposed on the Chinese during the Qing dynasty, thousands of years after Yu was supposed to have ruled China.
  • Regina in Once Upon a Time wears some pretty wild outfits in the Enchanted Forest. Her two major looks are best described as "ballgown dominatrix" and "vampire on derby day". In Storybrooke she usually wears either a blouse and skirt or pantsuit.
  • The Riddler Unitard was so hated by Frank Gorshin, his actor on the 1960s' Batman series, that he designed a new outfit for himself. The green three-piece suit and bowler hat with question mark tie that resulted is now the character's most common outfit.
  • While Ming in the short-lived Flash Gordon TV series avoids this most of the time, preferring to pass himself off like a benevolent dictator of a Third World country ("Ming the Merciless" is what his subjects call him behind his back) by wearing a military uniform, he does wear an ornate robe in an episode where Mongo commemorates the Sorrow, a manmade cataclysm that destroyed the previous Mongo civilization and left their world in ruins. Ming's Dragon Rankol wear a long black robe and some sort of a metal plate on his head.
  • Human and human-shaped villains in Kamen Rider either opt for a business suit, uniform, or traditional Japanese clothes or fall into the trap of ridiculousness.
    • Kamen Rider Zi-O: Ohma Zi-O loves gaudy bling waay too much. While his rider suit has Evil Is Cool gold and black aesthetic, his civilian clothes have gold and silver tassels, sash, something akin to a traditional Japanese suit underneath. No wonder it's the only time he turns up in that outfit and even then it's mostly obscured. Funnily enough, his past self is not inclined towards the gaudy and shiny, but still has a weird fashion sense for very much oversized short-sleeved shirts, shorts, and belts that were at one point used to drag him around by.
      • White Woz's grey and silver coat with a grey beret earned him the nickname French Woz and complaints about looking like a Disney movie reject. Coupled with his revoltingly slimy and arrogant Sissy Villain behavior it truly is a killer.
  • The Romulans of Star Trek: The Next Generation wore truly hideous uniforms with massive shoulder pads in patterns that looked like they were taken from curtains. And in the two-parter "Unification", we see this fashion sense extended to the civilian population. Word of God grew to hate these costumes, so Star Trek: Deep Space Nine would give the Tal Shiar better-looking uniforms, and Star Trek: Nemesis got rid of them for good.
    • A lot of hostile and friendly species on Star Trek tended to have rather questionable fashions, in fact: those Romulan fashions were borrowed liberally from the Vulcans. Cardassians in early appearances looked a lot like the later ones except for wearing really dorky clothes, and the Ferengi, villainous or heroic, almost always wore clothes with loud colors and tacky designs as part of their "oily used car salesman" aesthetic.
    • In the DS9 episode "Improbable Cause", when Romulans were suspected of an attempt on Garak's life, Odo quipped, "Considering those uniforms of theirs, you'd think they'd appreciate a decent tailor."
  • Gotham continues the Batman franchise tradition of employing ludicrous outfits. Post-virus Barnes deserves special mention for essentially wearing a BDSM outfit as a villain costume, despite being an ex-cop.
  • Farscape: Maldis's Hell-Bent for Leather take on Elizabethan garb earned him a degree of mockery, as did Scorpius's perpetual gimp suit.
  • Van Helsing: For some reason, Julius and his entire brood all wear a mixture of punk outfits and partial armor, which frankly make them look like extras in a Mad Max film. Which is especially striking considering that literally every other vampire in the series wears normal clothing.
  • J.A.K.Q. Dengekitai: Boss Iron Claw's giant broccoli-shaped hairdo, scruffy bear, and glimmering silver poncho make it hard to take him seriously.

  • The Stupendium as the Goose in "What a Fowl Day." Rather than literally wearing a goose costume, he invokes the image of a goose by wearing an over-the-top goose-themed suit. His outfit includes a white tuxedo with feathers on the shoulders, a white fedora, an orange tie, tinted orange-ish round shades, and in some shots, a walking stick. Some commenters have pointed out how ridiculous the costume is, although this was almost certainly intentional.
    "if you ever feel lacking of confidence in your appearance, remember this man sung this song in a park dressed like that
    if that isn't inspiring i don't know what is."

    Pro Wrestling 
  • Sherri Martel: Divine meets Pat Benatar meets Montana Max.
    • Her outfits and makeup were always strange, but why did she come out painted like a cat?
    Wrestlecrap Book of Lists!: Maybe she had just seen the show on Broadway. Maybe she imagined that a wrestling ring revival of Cats would cause her opponent to fall to the ground and quiver in fear — much like the real show — thus making for easy prey.
  • Dusty Rhodes was a heel in the seventies, and he was no-nonsense, all-business, all-bad. Fans liked that Dusty Rhodes a lot better than the polka-dotted fool he became. (Vince McMahon's revenge can take many forms.) But Rhodes somehow made it work, and turned it around on him.
  • Jim Cornette has many colorful yet tasteful, well-tailored suits, but no one ever talks about those due to the unsuspressable memories of his cheap, color clashing pastel getups, especially the canary yellow blazer he later called his "heat getting suit" in a shoot interview. And that's not even getting into his "wrestler" ring gear, which was perfectly fashionable in 1920 but worn in the 1980s, where underwear(modesty shorts) worn on top of pants was long out of date. It also must be noted that Cornette does own new millennium specs, but will forever be associated with his 1970s thick-framed Nerd Glasses. That still doesn't get into his Goofy Print Underwear, which has been exposed from time to time, some of which was handmade because the store-bought variety wasn't always ugly enough for Cornette's tastes!
  • Among the numerous botches that were the introduction of The Shockmaster, the top of the list is the infamous bedazzled purple Stromtrooper helmet.
  • Triple H's entrance from WWE Wrestlemania 22 definitely qualifies here, for the worst Conan outfit ever. Should have saved that one for Halloween, Trips... Not that face John Cena's homage to Al Capone was much better.
  • Damien Demento, especially his hairy Venus flytrap shoulder pads.
  • When Goldust turned back to heel at one point, he became The Artist Formerly Known As Goldust, who wore garish, disturbing outfits.
  • Nelson Frazier (Mabel/Viscera/Big Daddy V) used to wear body suits that resemble balloons or garbage bags (especially the latter when he was Viscera), then pajamas, and finally pants and suspenders but no shirt (his cup size must be bigger than even the most well endowed Divas).
  • The Beautiful People have worn skirts with furry boots, shirts that resemble skirts around the waist, they've worn diamond encrusted hot pants, they've put on garish shades of eye shadow, they've had '80s Hair, they've had fingerless gloves made out of fishnets, is it any wonder Roxxi Laveaux rejected a makeover from them?
  • Zack Ryder wore bright purple tights with different-length pants legs, a see-through jacket (which closer inspection shows to really be an extremely gaudy dress shirt), swimming goggles, and a headband on his first ECW appearance. Just in case that look wasn't bad enough, he also spiked all of his hair straight up. Thankfully, his outfit became more bearable as time went on, as he acquired solid jackets, ditched the goggles for shades, and found sensible tights.
  • The National Wrestling Alliance has had many odd designs over its enduring history but perhaps because fashion is associated with women, people really started to zero in on the fact the women's title belt looked especially oversized on heel champions Tasha Simone and Kacee Carlisle after Amazing Kong left for TNA (it was later switched out for a smaller platted model). Later fans became fixated on the even larger National Heavyweight Title was put on men who bordered between heavyweight and junior heavyweight like Kahagas or Vordell Walker when the NWA switched from primarily promoting weight classes to promoting regions on the side of men's singles. Even some legit heavyweights like James Storm looked kind of silly with it.
  • Inverted at SummerSlam 2010 in the WWE.Divas' Title match. The heel Alicia Fox wore a respectable outfit while her baby face opponent Melina came out decked in a yellow and orange ensemble complete with an excess of feathers and a garish Aztec headdress.
  • Speaking of Alicia Fox, during her title reign, she had a nightmarish pink and silver outfit that consisted of a skirt and sports bra covered in fringes and tassels, making people wonder if she'd robbed a piñata from some kid's birthday party. She keeps doing it now she's gone and given herself red hair and insists on wearing the pink piñata gear, giving her the look of a melting iced cake.
  • Beth Phoenix showed up at SummerSlam wearing a cross between a '50s waitress uniform and a nurse's costume. Sadly she's brought out even more of them since.
  • At Payback 2014, for the Shield versus Evolution match, almost everybody kept it simple. The Shield were in their typical SWAT-team tactical vests, and Randy Orton and Triple H wore their typical black trunks. Batista, on the other hand, out of absolutely nowhere, chose that night to debut a set of trunks, shin guards, and armband/elbow-pad/sleeve things that were an alarmingly bright shade of blue. Comparisons to everything from the Smurfs to the Power Rangers to Megaman soon followed. What makes it stranger is that he never wore those blue trunks before (instead wearing red or black), and walked out of the company the next night (a planned walkout, as he needed to leave to promote Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)), making their appearance all the more sudden and inexplicable. And this doesn't even begin to get into his wearing of leather vests and skinny jeans (which, on his muscular build, look strange and uncomfortable, not to mention making it impossible to properly do his Batista Bomb, leading to one noticeable blowout on Raw.)
  • Agua Puro had this opinion of La Rosa Negra during her first STARDOM run, being fans of her efforts to help Oedo~tai defeat Thunder Rock but not being fans of her black Otomix boots and MMA gloves worn with light pink and bright sliver two pieces, a shiny green tongue piercing, black lipstick and braided pigtails.
  • Braun Strowman of The Wyatt Family wears pants that make it look like he pissed himself. as you can see here.
  • When Sheamus returned from injury after Wrestlemania 31, he'd changed his hair to a large mohawk and sported beard braids. Beforehand, he had hair arranged in a fiery style and neatly-trimmed facial hair. Smarks thought that he looked absolutely ridiculous, and the crowd seemed to agree. While Sheamus made gestures that welcomed the crowd's anger, it only looked silly thanks to the crowd chanting "YOU LOOK STUPID!" at him.
  • Su Yung has a pair of blue leopard print long tights with holes in the front and back around her thighs, they are held by just a little more than a string. Under them is basically an Underwear of Power with a superfluous pants belt.
  • Adam Page! Want to deflate a madman who may pop out from anywhere without warning trying to kill you with a noose? Give him a man bun! Worse, Adam Cole started imitating him. Tellingly, the bun disappeared after Page turned face.
  • After Becky Lynch turned heel in 2021 and became "Big Time Becks", she seemingly started a crusade to dress as outrageously as possible during her promo segments. This also extended to her husband.
  • In the event she even bothered to change clothing, a heel Hana Kimura could usually be identified if she was wearing all white or all black, depending on if one was watching Wrestle-1, JWP, or World Wonder Ring Stardom. However, when she was "drafted" into International Army she overtook it, turned the group into Tokyo Cyber Squad, then began donning a rainbow of neon and pastel-colored hair dye, makeup, and clothing that critics described as "eye-searing" and taking her "sexy but dangerous" gimmick too far.

    Puppet Shows 
  • Invoked in The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance: When Seladon becomes The Quisling for the Skeksis, she starts dressing like them, wearing a baroque robe that doesn't really fit her, a goofy-looking Cool Crown, and equally goofy dark make-up. It looks absolutely ridiculous and everyone can see it for exactly what it is; a pathetic attempt to copy the Skeksis and their aesthetic. The Skeksis themselves are especially unimpressed, actively mocking Seladon for it and eventually ripping the outfit off when they imprison her, laughing at it the whole time.

  • The Transformers fell into this in the G2 toyline. Quite a bit of G2 was just G1 toys that were given a new accessory (often a spring-fired missile launcher that had been repurposed from the concurrent G.I. Joe toyline) and a new color scheme. Most of the Autobots didn't fair too badly with the latter- a lot of it was just darkening them up which, while out of place compared to the original bright reds and oranges that they tended to favor at least didn't look objectively bad. The Decepticons, however, found themselves frequently being sprayed with eye-searing neon colors.

    Video Games 
  • Many villains in the Final Fantasy series. A lot of the Amano-designed villains look particularly effeminate, all the way back to Final Fantasy II which gave us Emperor Mateus Palamecia, with his sexy black lipstick and his multi-colored hair. These include...
    • Kuja from Final Fantasy IX is the most over-the-top example of this trope, what with his man-thong. Not shockingly, his original character design was done by Amano and was one of the few that made it to the final game relatively intact.
    • Seymour, with his chest-baring technicolor robes and Picasso-esque hair follows close behind, though at least he can keep his manliness intact.
    • Subverted by Kefka from FFVI, who is a Monster Clown and thus one of the few cases where this look actually makes him menacing.
    • Not even the women are safe. While Edea from Final Fantasy VIII (designed by Tetsuya Nomura, not Amano) looks suitably goth in her pitch-black dress (and, being a witch, she doesn't require much freedom of movement) Ultimecia wears an eye-searing red evening gown with a plunging neckline... plunging all the way to her naughty bits, a split skirt, and painted feet instead of shoes. That's before discussing her makeup, too.
    • Dirge of Cerberus has Nero. One LPer noted simply, "He has a jockstrap. On his face."
  • Zaki from Live A Live wears a lizard. And nothing else.
  • Dantel, the final boss of the laughably awful Mortal Kombat ripoff Survival Arts is best described as an "incredibly cheap and hilarious white trash ripoff of Shang Tsung". Or more like "Amakusa on the change from someone's couch cushions".
  • Pokémon
    • Team Galactic in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl/Platinum. They have bowl cuts for Christ's sake. Parodied by VG Cats.
    • The Cipher Peons in Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness wear a hybrid between Stormtrooper armor and Power Ranger uniforms. In Colosseum, it's blue and dark purple; in XD, it's white. Regardless of the color, the group screams EVIL! In XD, the Hexagon Brothers go one step closer to Sentai with individually colored uniforms!
      • The Cipher Admins aren't always much better. Miror B, the first one you'll encounter, is a Disco Dan with a huge Poké Ball coloured Funny Afro.
    • Team Rocket grunts in Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver have pink hair. All of them.
    • Team Plasma has their agents dressed like Crusade-era knights, complete with Chi Rho on their chest cloth. A few folks on the internet think of them as Renaissance Faire rejects.
    • Team Flare in Pokémon X and Y, while they view themselves as Sharp-Dressed Mooks, the in-game NPCs think their bright orange outfits are too tacky and excessive, even one of them rejected joining Team Flare because of their dress code.
    • Pattern's still going strong with the Aether Foundation in Pokémon Sun and Moon. White-with-gold-trim color scheme, and the grunts all wear weird onesie coverall jumpsuits with lots of pouches down the sides of the legs, plus pure white pageboy caps with gold buttons on the top. One of their Admins keeps the color scheme but opts for a long double-breasted lab coat thing, complete with cowboy boots and flared pants.
    • Zig-zagged in Pokémon Sword and Shield with Chairman Rose. His normal outfit is a fairly tasteful grey suit; however, his "incognito outfit" includes blue shorts with white Poké Ball print that make it look like he's wearing Goofy Print Underwear with no pants. The outfit also shows off his dad bod more than his usual suit.
    • Postgame villains Swordward and Shielbert qualify. Both wear brightly coloured suits, which are garish but not too strange, all things considered. The issue is their hair - both of them have hairdos sculpted after the weapon in their names, which maintain their shapes but flop around as they speak or move, so they look utterly ridiculous as soon as they walk into a scene.
    • Pokémon Legends: Arceus: Volo's Gingko Guild outfit looks perfectly fine; however, once he reveals his true colors, he switches it out for an odd kimono/toga-hybrid outfit. He also changes his hairstyle to one that resembles Arceus' head in the process, which, while fitting his obsession with the Pokémon, just looks too goofy to be taken seriously.
  • Yggdrasil in Tales of Symphonia. It's a jumpsuit. Also, it is extremely disco and leaves absolutely nothing whatsoever to the imagination. Except his gender.
  • Almost everyone from Mortal Kombat, but special care must be taken to name Shinnok, Quan Chi, Sindel, Shang Tsung in MK3, Kano in MK3, and many others. For some reason, they don't seem so goofy in the game (except Shang Tsung and his dorky fighting stance), but if you've ever seen pictures of the actors wearing their actual costumes, it's very hard not to laugh. Most of the Earthrealm warriors look rather normal, particularly dressed-down characters like Liu Kang and Johnny Cage. Unless doing everything shirtless counts. Sonya, and the ninjas (well, male ninjas anyway) also look rather normal.
    • If you look closely, the ninjas' rears are completely colored, not black like it was in past games.
    • The Lin Kuei cyborgs would be a bit more menacing if they weren't bright red and yellow. There's a reason Sektor and Cyrax are referred to as "Ketchup and Mustard".
    • In Mortal Kombat X Cassie Cage has a habit of insulting the clothes of some villains, including Elder God Shinnok.
  • Bayonetta:
    • Jeanne in the first game wears a red jumpsuit with a huge poofy collar and a bow just above her ass, open-toed, high-heeled sandals, and fluffy tassels on her guns.
    • Jeanne has nothing on Balder, who wears a dead white peacock stole, a golden quarter mask and an earring-attached monocle over said mask. And a single glove.
    • Bayonetta 2 has adult Loptr, who wears a transparent blue cloak of sorts over a golden metal thong, has white lipstick, and has his hair done in a pyramid shape.
  • This is invoked with the Soda Poppers in Sam and Max.
  • Alpha Protocol:
    • Konstantin Brayko, by virtue of being a fanboy of US pop culture from the 1980s.
      Michael Thorton: How many gay cheetahs gave their lives for this jacket?...
    • Henry Leland is more restrained, but still has a deeply unfortunate (yellow, with orange and red stripes) taste in shirts and ties. Thorton comments on it, but never to his face.
    • One such comment is about how the only thing Leland and Brayko seem to have in common is a similar taste in shirts and ties. Ouch.
  • Atelier Iris 2: The Azoth of Destiny's Palaxius and his horrible, horrible man-Cleavage Window.
  • One of Big Bad Sadler's The Dragons Ramon Salazar from Resident Evil 4. Not only does he look like a wrinkly literal manchild, his outfit makes him look like a mini-Napoleon wannabe that makes it practically impossible to take seriously (if not for his better-dressed towering mutant mooks).
  • In Fallout: New Vegas, Big Bad Wannabe Benny wears a checkered suit jacket that makes him look like a used car salesman. Once he's dead, NPCs and companions will keep mentioning how his real crime was that jacket. Benny is based on real-life mobster Bugsy Siegel, who owned a similarly hideous jacket.
  • The Pack in Fallout 4's Nuka-World DLC. They dress using remnants of old animal costumes they got from the park, which include things like toucan masks and fuzzy wolf paw slippers. Their leader, Mason, wears furry pants, a teal shirt, and pastel face paints with a blonde handlebar mustache.
  • Evil Genius
    • Shen Yu (a Fu Manchu expy) wears a long, ornate robe of yellow, black, red, and white, complete with a dragon medallion the size of his head and a jade jewel in his forehead. He's almost completely bald, save for a single ponytail. He appears to be wearing blue eye shadow and has perfectly-groomed eyebrows, a ridiculous mustache, and painted fingernails.
    • Some of the henchmen aren't much better, such as Jubei (an Anime-inspired samurai) and Moko (a tribal protector).
  • The obscure Japan-only Data East game Garyo Retsuden takes place in Three Kingdoms-era China, and for the most part, the enemy forces don't look out of place there. At least until you reach the final boss. Red-and-yellow garb you'd normally expect to see in a superhero comic, wild blond hair, red eye mask, green get the idea. Even better, he's none other than Lu Bu. Yes, that Lu Bu.
  • Dark Souls
    • A hilarious example is an NPC Black Phantom called Xanthous King Jeremiah (Jeremiah the Yellow King in Japanese). As expected from his Boss Subtitles, he wears yellow getup, which is about as close an equivalent to a near gold yellow yogist's gear (think Dhalsim) with an overly huge, pointy suppository-shaped turban. Even the item description snarks about its color which "hurts the eyes".
    • The yellow turban, however, is a legacy item from Demon's Souls, where it is awarded to players who play the role of a Boss in a certain map. While the Dark Souls example doesn't do anything special (except being traded for a very rare ring), the Demons Souls variation gives an increase in magic damage, at the cost of wearing what looks like a custard tornado. Slightly justified in that the "turban" is actually itself a demonic creature in the form of a yellow robe which summons and possesses the boss to fight the host player, so looking like it's an entirely separate entity riding on top of its wearer's head is probably quite intentional.
    • Another unfortunate example is Demon's Souls' Garl Vinland. Say what you will about his supposed villainy (or rather, lack thereof), but the man is very knightly and very badass-like, if not for his squid head-shaped ornament on his helmet. The nicknames "Squid-head" and "Squid-knight" are particularly frequently mentioned.
  • Hitman: Absolution has the Saints, a group of female assassins who dress in fetish nun outfits. Not even the Agency understands why.
  • Soul Calibur III: As if Asteroth didn't have enough going against him with his low tier rating (well, aside from his Good Bad Bug), his alternate costume from the first two games (an executioner's hood and Spikes of Villainy coming from his shoulders) got modified into a claw hammer hat and nails protruding from his shoulders. So much for his having any chance of being taken seriously.
  • Terrormisu in Wario: Master of Disguise. Yeah, there's nothing much to say other than making your Big Bad look like a fifty plus year old Princess Peach cosplayer makes them look about as far from menacing or badass as you can imagine. It just has to be seen to be believed.
  • Validar from Fire Emblem: Awakening. As if his inability to rock the very Stripperiffic Sorcerer outfit wasn't bad enough, his horrible pineapple-like hairstyle and these... uh, earrings really don't help.
  • While what's evil depends on your alignment, the fusion of Lucifer and Walter in Shin Megami Tensei IV. A gold outfit that bares the chest and a weird distorted head? They might have been going for something that mixed otherworldly with regal, but what they got just looked ridiculous. The second form is a bit more impressive, though underwhelming.
  • The boss of Chapter 4 in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, after a long buildup through a creepy chapter, turns out to be...a Bedsheet Ghost wearing a party hat. Your partner comments on how ridiculous the villain looks. Even what the boss manages to pull on you after you meet him the first time (identity theft in the most literal sense) doesn't really diminish the effect of his odd choice of headwear.
  • Pagan Min of Far Cry 4 wears a bright pink, almost magenta suit. At one point in Rabi Ray Rana's radio speeches, he says that Pagan looks like he stole a Joker Halloween costume from somebody, and also on another occasion says he looks like "a metrosexual pimp". According to Word of God, Min wears the suit as a tribute to his deceased mother.
  • Try to keep a straight face when looking at the concept art for Nef Anyo from Warframe. Just try.
  • In Baldur's Gate II, we have the Big Bad Jon Irenicus. His outfit somehow manages to combine leather bondage harness, a high collar, and enough empty space to show off much of his muscled body. He looks so ridiculous that it's a good thing he's such a powerful spellcaster and Magnificent Bastard because otherwise he'd be impossible to take seriously. Meanwhile, his sister Bodhi's outfit looks fit for a dominatrix/sex fiend, but her dialogue never even hints that she is The Vamp. Of course, given that neither of them has a soul, you could argue that they've stopped caring what they look like.
  • Master Chard from Magical Starsign rocks a bug-eyed red mask and a large pink afro. Pico said it best:
    You talk tough for someone who looks like a circus exploded on his face.
  • Need for Speed: Carbon: Darius's outfit is a mess of contrasting styles and colors that his actor just can't quite pull off, which somewhat undermines his reputation as a feared and manipulative gang leader.
  • David from Killer is Dead, whose idea of regal, villainous attire consists of a golden crown, an ill-fitting overcoat with a golden underside, and a gaudy series of golden straps covering his naked body that all culminate in a giant spider-like codpiece. Even Mondo calls him out on his appalling fashion sense.
  • A variant with Handsome Jack from Borderlands 2. He wears what appears to be a very nice suit, but he wears it extremely shabbily, with the sleeves rolled up to the elbows and the buttons undone so you can see the smudged T-shirt and vest underneath. He's head of a company and really hates his coworkers, so it may be his way of spiting them. He also appears to be wearing a lab coat under another longcoat, and sneakers.
  • This appears in-universe in Disney's Kim Possible 3: Team Possible. When Shego mentions that she's saving up for an expensive swan tutu, Kim reacts in disgust.
  • In Big Fight, you must stop the machinations of the Mad Scientist Dr. D. The fact that he's combined Guile's giant flat-top and an M. Bison-style military outfit (partly unbuttoned!) with a clown nose and make-up more than fits half that description.
  • In Hades, when you unlock the Pact of Punishment in the post-game, you can end up upgrading third-region boss Theseus with the "Extreme Measures" option...which will give him a blinged-out machine-gun chariot and a ludicrously gaudy outfit. Conversation with Achilles about it indicates that Daedalus, who built the ensemble, knew full well that 1) it looked terrible and 2) Theseus, egotistical prick that he is, wouldn't realise.
  • Baten Kaitos: Emperor Geldoblame resembles a tarted-up, garish, heavy-set drag queen. In this case, Geldoblame's terrible sense of fashion serves to really underscore how much of a deranged, war-mongering genocidal lunatic he is.
  • Mostly averted entirely in Tyranny, but some of the Scarlet Chorus' uniforms look a little too much like BDSM gear for their own good. YMMV on whether or not this ties in well with their whole Army of Thieves and Whores gimmick.
  • Gundam 0079: The War for Earth: Char's iconic mask and helmet do not translate well into live action. His mask in particular looks laughable, appearing less like a piece of equipment designed to protect his eyes and more like a piece of gray paper with holes for the eyes.
  • Fashion Police Squad: In-universe, bad fashion sense is considered a crime that the Fashion Police must solve. The enemies you fight include scooter-riders with clothing so garish it glows and leaves a neon trail, Guy Fieri-expies with clothing so flaming hot it literally gives them fire powers, men in gimp suits, and tourists wearing socks with sandals.

    Visual Novels 
  • Ace Attorney:
    • The Big Bad of Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Kristoph Gavin is frequently mocked by the fandom for his shoes; you don't see them in the courtroom, but the fact he's otherwise dressed in a nice suit makes the lace-less golf shoes that almost look like hole-less Crocs stand out more.
    • In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice, Queen Ga'ran's prosecutor outfit looks ridiculous. It's a purple jumpsuit with gold swirls on her boobs and cleavage, a necklace with five magatamas, multi-colored rings on every finger, long fingernails that somehow work as pens, two large pink jewels on the side of her head, and long blue hair that, thanks to Power Floats and the jewels on the side of her head, make her hair look like a giant spider.
  • Gilgamesh from Fate/stay night seems to love tacky, ridiculously over-the-top outfits and accessories for his "casual" clothing. Pretty much the only normal-looking outfit he has is the tracksuit he wears in Unlimited Blade Works. And this is to say nothing of his golden armor.
  • All of the Floor Masters save Midori in Your Turn to Die have it rough, but special mention goes to the Dressup Doll Rio Ranger. He wears a clownish yellow hood, two tops around his waist, and a vest and tie...without a shirt underneath. Then again, all of his clothes were scavenged from the dead.

  • Sluggy Freelance: In the Punyverse story arc, the Evil Overlord wears lipstick and goes pantsless. Even his minions consider him a walking fashion disaster, and some of them are dumb enough to call him up on it.
  • Black Mage from 8-Bit Theater heralds his transformation into a walking nexus of destructive evil force by wearing a clown costume. This was not his idea; he just annoyed the dark god who was granting him his new powers and has suffered numerous jokes about his appearance.
  • Galgarion, the Big Bad of RPG World, has a designer that does this to him (the comic largely being an Affectionate Parody of the Final Fantasy series, we are not spared the Kuja outfit).
  • Parodied in The Non-Adventures of Wonderella, as Hitlerella points out the possible downsides of a Darker and Edgier costume change to Jokerella.
    Wonderella: Holy crap! This bomb may have a few seconds left... but those assless chaps? Those are forever.
  • Homestuck:
    • Eridan Ampora. Bright purple Ominous Opera Cape with a High Collar of Doom, blue Scarf of Asskicking, black shirt, blue-and-black striped pants, thick Hipster glasses, purple hair highlight, and an absurd amount of rings. It turns out how you'd expect it to. It appears he's trying to emulate the appearance of his Famous Ancestor Dualscar, but he's trying just a bit too hard at it. It's also not the only thing he's trying too hard at. Though he apparently wasn't a villain in that timeline, his God Tier outfit inspired much lulz, especially his pantaloons.
    • An argument can be made for Gamzee as well, depending on whether you find his clown makeup and scars combination to be scary or hilarious. Certainly his God Tier outfit raised a few eyebrows, thanks to its Huge, Purple, Codpiece.
    • Also, major villain Lord English has an impressively gaudy outfit. Features include a solid gold peg leg, a gold tooth, and a trenchcoat whose edges constantly flash through a rainbow of colors. Not to mention billiard-ball eyes that do the same thing. All of this over Hulk-like torn pants and nothing else.
    • The imps, and most of Sburb's other enemies, are doomed to this by design. Their appearance has to take on aspects of whatever random junk the players prototype. The first object John prototypes is a colorful jester doll.
  • Mysterious Monocle Man from The Free Willies: Although seeming like a Man of Wealth and Taste when first introduced to the protagonists, the "Alec Giav Mayst" disguise he dons before investigating Emu High and wears for the rest of the comic consists of interesting H&M clearance rack fashion choices.
    Mysterious Monocle Man: Am I supposed to be scared? Now you just look like a... twentysomething with no sense of style.
    Shapeshifter: Exactly. Just like you.
    Mysterious Monocle Man: ...True.

    Web Videos 
  • Flander's Company loves using in-universe examples of this trope:
    • The antagonists from season 2, the C.C Corporation, are a company in charge of designing suits for superheroes; their fashion designers, Déborah Levinski and Maxcence, have such a horrible sense of fashion that Carla uses it to push Cindy to quitting merely by ordering them to do a relooking for her.
    • Then we have supervillain-wannabe Kevin, who joins the C.C Corporation later. He dresses in such a ridiculously and horribly flashy way that a mere glance at him causes pure pain to Hippolyte. Carla even states once that his mere haircut is "an invitation to murder".
    • While Aegis are a Knight of Cerebus with relatively acceptable costumes, their member Pyro has a clear poor sense of fashion, which is lampshaded by Mello. Hippolyte describes her as "a Godzilla à la Drag Queen".
  • While he's not exactly "evil", the bit character Ian Drivel from Philosophy Tube wears an incredibly tacky shirt covered in uncensored hentai images and a Deadpool-themed knit woolen hat. The series creator described the shirt as "the single worst piece of clothing I have ever allowed to touch my body".

    Western Animation 
  • The Venture Bros.:
    • Doctor Venture explains this to his son:
      Dr. Venture: Every professional nemesis has weaknesses. One, they wear goggles. Peripheral vision is shot! Two, helmets with logos and stuff on them? A guy with a big metal piece of punctuation on his hat can't turn his head fast!
    • Among the tons of examples of actual characters, The Monarch stands out quite nicely in black and orange spandex with armored bits and huge butterfly wings. In "The Devil's Grip" he dons an extravagant Ming the Merciless-style robe while preparing to torture Doctor Venture.
    • St. Cloud, ultra-rich fanboy and Billy and Pete White's archenemy, is an interesting case. His regular outfit (a plum-coloured suit and round glasses) is definitely not an example. However, in his first professional encounter with his nemesis, he dresses up in a truly ludicrous outfit that includes a black robe and a Greek helmet with a cloud and lightning bolts attached (punning on his name). He also has a tendency to dress up as a reference to various media; for example, dressing like a Spartan from 300 (complete with painted-on abs) when in Greece in the episode "Spanakopita!".
  • Kim Possible:
    • In "Dimension Twist", Drakken after his "Evil Eye for the Bad Guy" makeover.
    • His Bueno Nacho CEO outfit in So the Drama isn't going to win him any Best Dressed Executive awards, either.
    • Also Professor Dementor's wig and dress, er, housecoat in "Ill-Suited".
  • Ben 10:
  • Batman: The Brave and the Bold:
  • The Batman: The Joker looks like the bastard son of Sideshow Bob and Envy with his dreadlocks and the fact that he walks barefoot all the time.
  • Fufu Gauche from The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat is a fashion designer whose ridiculous and tacky fish-themed clothes that he also wears turned him into the laughingstock of the industry. He planned to exact revenge by forcing everyone to wear his clothes via transformation ray.
  • Miraculous Ladybug: Many of the Akumatized villains have ridiculously gaudy costumes, accentuated by brightly colored skin and Anime Hair. Ironically, their creator Hawk Moth is in the fashion industry in his civilian identity. Apparently he doesn't control their outfits (though see the show's Fridge page).
    • The Bubbler has bright blue skin and a poofy, glaringly red bubble outfit.
    • Mr. Pigeon's skintight pink hood and overly wide eyes make him look like a poorly-made toy.
    • Kung Food looks like an Oni painting, which... doesn't quite translate as well to CGI. The square head and Super Saiyan hair are particularly ridiculous.
    • Reflekta has pink skin and an eye-searingly pink frilly tutu ensemble that makes her look like a kabuki-themed clown. To make matters worse, her goal is to make everyone in Paris look exactly like her.
    • Pixellator has an opaque visor with a camera lens for one eye, as well as pink hair on only one side of his face. The pastel pink-and-blue-on-black color scheme doesn't do him any favors.
    • Simon Says dresses in horribly clashing shades of green and purple, as does later villain Gigantitan (who at least has the excuse that he's a literal baby).
    • Troublemaker's outfit makes her look like a punk panda.
    • Style Queen looks like she covered herself in gold paint for an art project. Ironically enough, her civilian identity also works in the fashion industry.
    • Party Crasher is so bad he gets laughed at in-universe; he's a disco villain with a disco-ball patterned jacket, blue skin, and a bubblegum-pink afro-mustache combo. He still proves himself to be highly effective, ridiculous appearance and all.


Narcis Prince

While ranking each Punch-Out!! boxer by their cheating, Bumbles McFumbles finds that Narcis Prince's infractions are all wardrobe-related.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (14 votes)

Example of:

Main / FashionVictimVillain

Media sources: